Super Rugby is back – although not quite as we know it. While New Zealand will make a sort of sporting history in the post COVID world. The country declared itself virus-free earlier in the week and fans will be allowed to attend matches as normal.
The Highlanders vs Chiefs will raise the curtain to the localised version of Super Rugby, kicking off the Aotearoa competition on Saturday.
The two sides’ most recent meeting was one of the more memorable Super Rugby outings, ending 31-31 in Dunedin. The two sides have shared the spoils pretty evenly throughout their historic meetings, too. Out of the 33 matches, they’ve both seven apiece and lost nine apiece.
The only notable difference is that the Highlanders tend to lose at home more than they win (seven wins vs nine losses).
Both sides have given it as good as they got over the years and despite a few rogue hammerings, even the average score line between the two sides leaves little to separate them: Highlanders 22-23 Chiefs. The visitors hold the upper hand in terms of tries with 92 vs 80.
Rugby starved sports fans will take anything after the global lockdown, but they might just be in for a treat if the numbers are anything to go by.
Antoinette is a recovering journalist, having written for Sports Illustrated, The Guardian, Daily Maverick and others. She has won multiple SAB Journalist of the Year awards, across a variety of categories. She thinks it’s strange writing about herself in the third person, unless she’s playing as herself in The Sims…which she’s been doing for over 20 years.